AN application to build a water turbine near Haughton Castle in Humshaugh has been withdrawn after attracting widespread objection.

Renewables First, a UK energy firm, wanted to install an AquaZoom vortex hydro turbine with an associated structure buried within the existing river bank.

A planning report from Renewables First stated: “The scheme has been designed to minimise the impact on the surrounding area. The site will be used as a hydro-electric generating station with the turbine and associated infrastructure in place for the duration of the project lifetime, a minimum of 40 years.”

The report added: “Assessments show there will be no significant impacts to ecology, heritage, landscape, flood risk or nearby residents. No protected species will be affected by the development or operation of the scheme.”

However, it has now withdrawn the proposal after rejections cited the significant potential implications for nearby protected species and habitats.

An Environment Agency objection to the proposal stated: “The proposed activity may have a detrimental effect on fish species and their habitats both at the site and more widely. The application does not include adequate information to fully assess the nature of any impacts and identify any mitigation measures required.”

An objection from a neighbour stated that the visual impact on the houses and public footpaths had been ignored within the area of a Grade I historic building.

It is not yet clear whether a second application will be submitted.